Kris Kobach Pushes Voter Fraud Lies While Meeting With Fellow Suppression Activists

Kris Kobach is getting desperate. In a column last week for Breitbart, the Kansas Secretary of State declared that voter fraud tipped the scales in the election last year in New Hampshire.

The evidence?

Anyone who registered to vote on Election Day with another state’s drivers’ license and didn’t get a New Hampshire license within 60 days was an illegitimate voter and, according to Kobach’s apparently psychic powers, most likely a Democrat!

Registering to vote and casting a ballot in New Hampshire while having a driver’s license from another state is legal. In fact, the New Hampshire Supreme Court settled this debate in 2015, finding that registered voters do not have to get a New Hampshire license within 60 days.

It appears that the vice-chair of the Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity does not understand the election laws of New Hampshire, where his commission will be meeting on Tuesday.

Many people, for various reasons, choose not to go to the DMV to get a new license upon moving to a new state, most commonly, college students from out-of-state who live on campus and don’t drive.  Unsurprisingly, New Hampshire voters who have out-of-state licenses live most frequently in college towns. But according to Kobach, such voters committed fraud. Besides Kobach’s own egregious and badly flawed argument, there are no signs of voter fraud taking place in New Hampshire.

We have seen similarly specious arguments from other purveyors of the voter fraud myth. For example, Donald Trump has conflated being registered to vote in more than one state with voter fraud. Kobach was once in trouble for claiming a dead voter had cast a ballot, despite the fact he was very much alive.

Kobach’s decision to write as a paid columnist for Breitbart, which Bannon called “the platform for the Alt-Right,” is raising questions of its own: George W. Bush’s ethics lawyer Richard Palmer told The Huffington Post that Kobach could be in violation of federal conflict of interest statutes by “getting paid by somebody to write about your official duties.”

Naturally, Kobach has stacked the panel of witnesses for his commission’s second official meeting with fellow voter fraud conspiracy theorists, including Robert Popper, John Lott, Ken Block, Donald Palmer, and Hans von Spakovsky, to testify to the commission.

Popper, the director of Judicial Watch’s Election Integrity Project, has threatened to sue states and counties unless they purged their voter rolls of supposedly ineligible voters. Advocates feared that the move targeted communities of color. Lott has a record of pushing discreditedanalyses” about the 2008 Minnesota Senate race, erroneously blaming voter fraud for the Republican incumbent’s defeat.

Block, for his part, recently authored a report on people voting in more than one state for the Government Accountability Institute, an organization founded by Bannon, which relied on a consumer database to suggest that there were over 8,000 cases of duplicate voting in the last election. Palmer, the former Virginia State Board of Elections secretary, similarly tried to hunt for supposed duplicate voting. Instead he ended up mistakenly sending 125,000 Virginia voters a notification that wrongly claimed that they were registered to vote elsewhere. He blamed it on an “administrative error.”

Von Spakovsky, who is also a member of the commission, made it his life’s work to suppress voting rights, particularly the rights of people of color. He regularly cites a 2010 Missouri State House election as proof that voting by noncitizens is rampant in elections, claiming that it was decided by votes “cast illegally by citizens of Somalia.” However, a court couldn’t find any evidence of such misconduct. His employer, the Heritage Foundation, once tried and failed to find a significant amount of cases of voter impersonation.

Incidentally, there are more people on Kobach’s commission than people the Kansas secretary of state has convicted of voter fraud.

As the Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law has also pointed out, all of the people testifying at the meeting are white men, despite the fact that election irregularities and abuses (and the voter suppression measures backed by Kobach) disproportionately affect people of color.

But Kobach’s problems don’t end there. It was recently revealed that members of the commission have been using their personal email addresses for official duties, a potential violation of the Presidential Records Act that raises further questions about the commission’s transparency.

A federal judge recently reprimanded Kobach for failing to comply with federal disclosure laws, which the commission’s lawyer downplayed as an “honest misunderstanding.” Back in June, Kobach offered a similar explanation in a lawsuit with the ACLU where he was sanctioned and fined $1,000 for misleading the court about a document he brought to a meeting with Trump, dismissing his wrongdoing as another “misunderstanding.”

Of course, Kobach has prosecuted people for making honest mistakes, all as part of his quest to justify voter suppression. It’s dirty work, but someone like Kobach is more than eager to do it.

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Anonymous

How about the 860 polling places that closed between 2012 and 2016?

2martins

Yes! Almost all of which were in Dem. voting areas, not to mention other polling places that significantly reduced hours of operation and shortened early voting periods, etc.

Anonymous

It is Richard Painter - not Palmer - " George W. Bush’s ethics lawyer Richard Palmer told The Huffington Post that Kobach could be in violation of federal conflict of interest statutes by “getting paid by somebody to write about your official duties.”

Uttman66

If we truly want to talk about a witch Hunt, Trump's voter fraud panel is as daunting as it comes. If I believed there was a widespread threat to our democratic process of elections, I'd have no problem with a bonafide investigation, but Kobach's not the person to be heading that up.
Known as the Godfather of racial profiling, Kobach has worked diligently to assure 1out of every7 Kansan's are ineligible to vote, the vast majority of which are minorities.
When forced by Kansas Courts to prove his claims of voter fraud, claims he used to push his agenda with Trump, it was found only 5-6 cases actually existed, all of whom were elderly!
But let's be honest as to what this is really about...
Trump's loss of the popular vote, and his search for 3-5 million votes, not to mention voter suppression in the upcoming election. Kobach himself stated, just yesterday that his problem with the voter registration rules in New Hampshire is... wait for it... "They're Democrats!"

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Ball Buster

People moving to NH delay getting their driver's registration changed for as long as possible because it is so costly. Many states charge around $50, but NH bases the fee on the value of the vehicle. Mine was over $300 for a subcompact. NH also has a lot of traveling medical people that do 3 or 6 month stints. Sometimes they keep getting extended, but since they don't know they don't change their license. Not rocket science to figure this out folks.

Wupcdaz

Are we supposed to assume that people are willing to risk a felony and a prison term to add one more vote to the total? Or an illegal immigrant is willing to risk deportation to add a vote? How much would, presumably democrats, have to pay to make the risk worth it? Those are some expensive votes!

Patricia

You think an illegal is worried about being deported when Obama was on national TV telling them to vote and that there were safe- nothing at all would happen. When they get into America the Democrats give them welcome baskets with Democrat and voter registration forms in them. Dearborn, Michigan is called the Muslim Capital of the United States. Do you realize that Obama gave ALL immigrants food stamps, welfare, Medicaid and Social Security? Disgusting! I think for any immigrant that's more than payment enough! Living in America to them is like being on vacation! They don't have to work & get it all free & those Muslims are driving $75,000 cars and living in $350,000 houses. Look up the Muslim Festival in Dearborn, Michigan on YouTube.com. You won't believe what you see. That's how they pay them for voting democratic! I don't understand what the big deal is to have an investigation done on this. I'd sure feel better knowing that my vote counts & that it's not being cancelled out because of an illegal immigrant voting.

Anonymous

Geezus, Patricia. The way you shovel that manure leaves me to guess that you work as a farmhand.

Chariotdrvr14

Amazing the number of witless ignorant bigots on the comment board. Funny that for all those that clamour for voter ID laws and investigations into voter usually only wind up finding GOP voters to be the only perpetrators of any such fraud. I find this true from many news articles that have covered it. Kobach's efforts reek of anti democracy at their core. Trump's reasoning for creating this commission were based on the gullibility of believing any of the absolute nonsense (which is mostly what) appears at Breitbart.

J Procter

Really? GOP wants investigate only to find that repubs are the 'perpetrators.' Talk about witless. You and many others who seem to fear investigations into fraud are completely intellectually dishonest. I agree with a previous poster who indicated that it is very difficult to even look into fraud because of mechanisms and obstacles in place. It is very, very hard to investigate and prove, on purpose. It is so obvious to anyone with eyes to see and a brain to evaluate input objectively on this issue that there are open avenues to cheat (and many articles about them) that unscrupulous people from both parties abuse. As far as the NH situation goes, I will wait to see what, if anything, is determined. On the other hand, what is going on in California (and other states) is nothing short of a state making it very easy for illegal immigrants to register and to cast votes so that identifying the fraud is next to impossible. Now, I get it that a lot of Democrats don't perceive of illegal aliens as 'illegal' at all, so they rationalize this behavior as something that is 'ok.' I am just one of many people who believe 'citizenship' means something and that we all should be concerned about the disenfranchisement of legal citizen's votes by people who are not yet legal, let alone citizens. So, to quote one of the previous voter fraud denier posts, go shovel your BS to other deniers who will eat up your 'witless' logic and who are not honest enough to even consider the very real possibility of fraud in our system.

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